Popular streamer Pokimane is leaving Twitch

Popular streamer Pokimane is leaving Twitch

Image credits: Craig Barrett/Getty Images for the Shorty Awards

Pokimane, one of the most popular streamers on Twitch, announced today that it is leaving the platform. It’s not yet clear if she will retire from content creation completely, or if she will move from Twitch to another platform.

“He’s been a pickpocket at my house for ten years,” Pokiman said books On X. “But it’s time to say thank you for all the memories and love during my days in League, Fortnite, and Among Us.”

When Twitch streamer pay data was leaked in 2021, Pokimane – whose real name is Imane Anys – was the highest-paid woman on the platform. With her departure from Twitch, she has 9.3 million followers, making her the 10th most followed user. As one of the first women of color to achieve Twitch stardom in a male-dominated gaming culture, Pokimane’s influence is clear.

“What an amazing ride,” Twitch’s X account responded to Pokimane’s announcement. “We are so proud of everything you have accomplished and what lies ahead. You will always have a home on Twitch, Poki.

Over the past few years, many major streamers have left Twitch for exclusive deals with other platforms like YouTube, or more recently Kick. Kick offers creators 95% of their subscription revenue, which is a huge upgrade over Twitch’s basic 50-50 split; Participants in Twitch’s Partner Plus program can do a 70-30 split.

Twitch in a period of chaos. The Amazon-owned platform has made multiple rounds of layoffs in the past year as it struggles to turn a profit — in 2024 alone, Twitch laid off 500 employees, who make up 35% of its workforce. The company halted service in South Korea, one of the world’s largest esports markets, and sparked discord in its community over confusing and ever-changing payment structures.

Although Kick gives creators a better share of revenue, the grass isn’t necessarily greener. Kick is notoriously lax when it comes to content moderation, and has become a new home for some streamers who have been banned from Twitch. One such streamer is Adin Ross, who has used his Kick app to live stream porn and neo-Nazi platforms. Some streamers have also turned to Kick because it allows gambling content, which Twitch banned last year.

Pokimane is unlikely to take her talents to Kick. In June, she said in a live broadcast that profiting from Kick would harm her “morals and ethics.”

Maybe it’s time for Pokémon to take a break from the internet. Recently, some prominent YouTube creators, like MatPat and Tom Scott, announced their retirement, sparking a conversation about how creators decide when it’s time to move on.

Without her word, it’s hard to know what’s next for Pokimane, but her departure from Twitch represents a historic moment for the struggling platform.

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